ASU, Arizona Department Of Health Services Announce COVID-19 Testing Partnership

Published: Friday, July 10, 2020 - 1:16pm
Arizona State University
The ASU Biodesign Institute is partnering with the Arizona Department of Health Services to offer saliva-based COVID-19 testing.

The ASU Biodesign Institute is partnering with the Arizona Department of Health Services to offer saliva-based COVID-19 testing in west Phoenix starting this weekend.

Gov. Doug Ducey announced the partnership at his press conference Thursday. The tests don't require an uncomfortable nasal swab. Instead, the test detects coronavirus particles in an individual's saliva.

"All you do is spit into a capsule, the test is done with saliva," Ducey said. "The first drive-thru will be Saturday, July 11, in the West Valley. We’re going to add additional sites and days, and this will be ongoing over the next couple of months.”

ASU has been developing the saliva-based testing for several months and is currently using them to test staff and students ahead of the fall semester. Expanding the testing options to the general public is a step in the right direction, ASU President Michael Crow said.

“It is the university’s commitment to be of service to the citizens of the state of Arizona in any way we can as we all work together to deal with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Crow said in a statement. “We are fortunate to have some extremely talented people at the university who have developed an innovative testing model, and it is our duty to share that expertise and put it to work to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.”

The first major testing event will begin Saturday morning at the Ak-Chin Pavilion in west Phoenix. Those interested in receiving a test must register by creating an account with the Arizona Department of Health Services.

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